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Novavax Inc. claims its vaccine to be 90% percent effective based on a US trial. Here is everything you need to know.

Novavax Inc, a Maryland-based vaccine maker, June 14 claimed its COVID-19 vaccine to be 90% effective. The claim is based on a US trial conducted on 30,000 participants.

Furthermore, the company stated that its vaccine, "Covovax" has similar efficacy against the mutated and more concerning variants of coronavirus. 

Here is What Experts Have to Say About the Covovax

The first thing is its efficacy, and the preliminary data place it to be around 90% against the generic variant. The vaccine is a two-dose jab made up of spike protein found in the virus and is responsible for the covid infection.

The vaccine works by exposing the body to the spike protein. In retaliation, the body develops the defense mechanism through the immune system to fend off the infection.

This way, if the body is exposed to the actual coronavirus, it will know how to combat the infection effectively.

Safety and Efficacy Profile of Novavax Vaccine

The phase 3 trial in the US started back in the last month of 2020 and included around 30000 participants from 119 sites, including the US and Mexico. The aim was to test the safety and efficacy of jabs, emphasizing those population groups most affected by coronavirus infection.

The new NVX-CoV2373 vaccine appears to have an overall 90% effectiveness in providing safety against coronavirus infection. For the generic variant of coronavirus, the study found the vaccine to be 95% effective while also showing around 85% efficacy against the UK variant of the coronavirus.

There is still not enough data about its efficacy against the highly infective Brazil variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. However, one part of the study conducted on the South African population,  affected mainly by the South African variants, found the Novavax jabs to be 60% effective in preventing mild to severe symptoms. 

UK trails of Novavax Vaccine

Apart from the US, the company is also conducting phase 3 trials in the UK. Although the trials have not yet been completed, the test has shown similar results to the US-based study. The vaccine has demonstrated near 90% efficacy against both the generic and alpha variant of coronavirus.

The Working Mechanism of the Novavax Vaccine

Novavax two-dose jabs come under the protein adjuvant vaccine's umbrella. While the composition is somewhat different from its already in use counterparts, such as the Pfizer vaccine, its working mechanism is similar. It teaches the body to fight off the infection by recognizing the spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

While other mRNA-based vaccines force the body to create spike proteins, Novavax takes a different route. It directly injects the spike protein into the body. The protein alone won't cause the infection, but the body treats it as an infection and tries to fend it off through its innate defense mechanism that is the immune system.

The body retains what is called the memory of this encounter and strengthens the immune system accordingly to prevent the infection in the future. This way, those who have been vaccinated gain immunity against the novel coronavirus.

Composition of the NVX-CoV2373

Novavax vaccine is a protein derivative vaccine and comprises the spike protein found in the SARS-CoV-2 virus. It is developed by Novavax using recombinant nanoparticle technology. The vaccine is further put together with Matrix-M adjuvant to magnify the immune response and trigger antibodies' production in large numbers.

Storage Requirement for the Novavax Vaccine

Novavax can be stored for up to three months at an average l fridge temperature, unlike Pfizer and Moderna, which must be kept at ultra-low temperatures. This puts the vaccine in line with AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson, both of which do not require extremely low temperatures to store.

These easy-to-store vaccines can be good options in those countries that could not afford the modern and expensive storage units to transport and store the more temperature-sensitive mRNA-based vaccines.

Related Read: COVID Vaccines In India: A Guide To Understand Efficacy, Doses, and Side-Effects

India's Connection to Covovax

The Novavax NVX-CoV2373 vaccine is already in production in the country, thanks to the company's partnership with the Serum Institute of India. The collaboration happened back in August 2020. Under the agreement between both contributing parties, Novavax approved a license to Serum Institute of India to produce and distribute its proprietary vaccine for coronavirus infection.